BEIJING, CHINA – China on Jan. 8 approved five genetically modified crops for import, a move that could increase overseas grain purchases and ease pressure from the United States, the world’s biggest GM crop producer, to open its markets to more agricultural products, according to a Reuters report.
China’s decision comes as the two countries work to find common ground in a trade dispute that began in July. A U.S. trade delegation is meeting this week in Beijing with its Chinese counterparts to seek common ground in the trade dispute, which has led to a 25% tariff on soybeans coming from the United States.
It was the first face-to-face talks since U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to a 90-day truce in December.
Two of the newly approved products — BASF’s RF3 canola and Bayer-owned Monsanto’s glyphosate-tolerant MON 88302 canola — had been wait for approval for six years, according to Reuters.
The other approved products were DowDuPont Inc.’s DP4114 corn and DAS -44406-6 soybeans, and the SYHT0H2 soybean developed by Bayer CropScience and Syngenta but now held by BASF, it said.
China, which does not allow the planting of GM food crops but allows imports of GM crops for animal feed, had not approved any GM crops for import since July 2017, according to Reuters.